Raiding — and Pairing — the Candy Bag

The doorbell has stopped ringing, the costumes are put away and the sugar high has worn off. 

With the kids finally tucked away in bed, it is almost mandatory that the parents start rifling through the Halloween haul from the trick-or-treating adventure. Certainly, the first priority is to make sure anything the kids may eat from the candy bag is safe … but there is also a certainty that some samples will be taken. 

“We always think about pairing wine with different main course meals, but why not with something like the candy collected on Halloween?” says Gillian Minaker, Assistant Brand Manager at Lakeview Wine Co. “Wine is an experiential drink, and getting the right pairing can make any food — snack or meal — better.”

Lakeview offers the following pairing suggestions if you are sitting down with a selection of Halloween snacks and are wondering what kind of wine you should pour with it:

  • Mini Chocolate Bars — Most of the brand-name mini candy bars you will pull out of the bag are made with a milk chocolate, which calls for a silky red, such as a Pinot Noir or a VQA red blend that marries exceptionally well with the creamy flavour and texture of milk chocolate.
  • Potato Chips — From the sweet to the salty. A crisp Ontario Riesling or light Sauvignon Blanc nicely cuts the saltiness and fat of a regular flavoured potato chip. Did you get lucky and pull out a bag of barbecue? Try it with a Pinot Noir. Got a bag of cheesies? Pour a glass of Pinot Grigio. Cracking open some Doritos calls for something bubbly.
  • Popcorn/Candied Popcorn — Popped corn kernels — especially if they have a salty, buttery flavour — are perfect with the popping bubbles of a sparkling wine, which pair very well with salty foods. If you have a cheesy popcorn, try it with a hearty red like Cabernet Sauvignon or a creamy Chardonnay. 
  • Jelly Beans and Gummies — Reach for a bottle of Moscato. This fruity, flavourful wine is an amazing complement to the fruit flavours of these small, chewy candies.
  • Lollipops — While coming in a wide array of flavours, the fruity tang of a lollipop calls for the same in a wine. Fruity notes in a bubbly Riesling — tangerine, melon, green apple, lemon — would be delightful while working away on the sucker.

“Whatever you plan on eating, sweet and/or salty snacks included, there is a wine that will enhance that flavour experience,” says Gillian . “But each pairing is a personal experience. Play around a bit, experiment and find what works best for you.”